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31 мая, 21:30

UK’s richest 20% reduce spending by £23bn during lockdown

Analysis suggests wealthiest Britons have used period to increase savings and pay debtsThe richest 20% of Britons will have reduced their spending by around £23bn by the middle of June, according to analysis by the New Policy Institute that shows the coronavirus pandemic has allow the better off an unprecedented opportunity to increase savings and pay down debts.After three months of lockdown, reductions in the amount households spend on entertainment, sport, hair and beauty, eating and drinking and transport, those in the bottom fifth of the income scale will have reduced their spending by just £3.5bn. Continue reading...

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31 мая, 20:52

Further questions for Dominic Cummings and Boris Johnson | Letters

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Readers point out the problems and discrepancies in the government’s account of the chief adviser’s trip to Durham during lockdownIn questions following his statement on 25 May, Dominic Cummings claimed that the reason he did not tell the prime minister of his movements on Friday 27 March was that Boris Johnson was upstairs in Downing Street in bed.However, your timeline (6 April) states that on that day the prime minister reported having mild symptoms and was still leading the government until the following Thursday or Friday. Furthermore, there was a cabinet meeting chaired by Johnson on 30 March, where it would be normal even if Cummings had not been present for a briefing to have taken place between the two. So would Cummings’ absence not have been noted then by the PM, or other cabinet members? Continue reading...

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31 мая, 20:52

Marcus Thuram and Jadon Sancho both pay tribute to George Floyd after scoring

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Sancho reveals message reading ‘Justice for George Floyd’Thuram takes a knee after scoring for MönchengladbachJadon Sancho and Marcus Thuram sent out a powerful message of solidarity towards those protesting in the name of George Floyd, after scoring in their respective Bundesliga games on Sunday.The England winger revealed a slogan on his undershirt after scoring for Borussia Dortmund against Paderborn. This followed the Mönchengladbach forward Thuram taking a knee in a goal celebration earlier on Sunday, as his side beat Union Berlin. Continue reading...

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31 мая, 20:51

Covid-19: will the government’s mixed messages lead to another surge? | Letters

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Concerns about the latest easing of lockdown restrictions are raised by Jo Jackson, Gary Nethercott, Piers Brendon, Joseph Palley and Kathleen Hines· Coronavirus – latest updates· See all our coronavirus coverageMany leading scientists are surely right to be concerned about the mixed messages sent regarding the easing of lockdown, and the perceived green light to interpret government guidelines using our own discretion. Here, on the riverside in Ely, a bar adjacent to a small green public space has been given a licence by the very benevolent council to sell takeaway food and alcohol.On Saturday afternoon this meant social distancing was measured in centimetres, while shouting and guffawing, and sharing picnics, made sure the transmission rate had a terrific time. Toilet facilities were provided by local gateways, gardens and plastic pint pots. Friday evening ditto, and the relaxation was not yet even in place. Going back to Thursday evening, this meant everyone present stopped socialising, briefly, to clap for the NHS. Just sheer madness.Jo JacksonEly, Cambridgeshire Continue reading...

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31 мая, 20:44

My favourite game: England v Australia, Fifth Test, the Oval 2009

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Andrew Flintoff had struggled through his final Test but then he ran out Ricky Ponting and it provided a memory for the agesI was a relative latecomer to Test cricket. The 2005 Ashes kickstarted it all; the summer of Michael Vaughan’s heroes coincided with the birth of my first son, a blur of hot, restless nights spent watching recorded Channel 4 coverage (the last year Test cricket was shown on free-to-air TV) while trying to jiggle a baby back to sleep. I never made it to a game that year but the seed was sown. For some reason, in those years of small children, a full day out of the house, getting gently drunk with a few friends and a bag of sausage rolls, became an incredibly compelling prospect. There was also the cricket, of course. Each summer I started block-booking tickets for a day at my local ground, the Oval. Takers down at the Dads’ Club were never hard to find.  Continue reading...

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31 мая, 20:42

The Guardian view on lockdown choices: who to trust? | Editorial

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The relaxation of the rules confronts people across England with impossible decisions Across Europe, the start of June marks a new phase in the coronavirus response. In the coming days, new measures will take effect in Italy, France, the Netherlands, Greece, Spain and Estonia, as well as the UK. Several countries are preparing to reopen restaurants, cafes and theatres, as well as schools. It is a measure of how poorly the UK government has managed the pandemic that even the more limited easing of the lockdown that is due to take place in England inspires more fear than relief.As it is, the week ahead will confront parents of school-age children, 2.2 million people who have until now been “shielding” at home, and millions more adults who have been told they can return to work, with an impossible choice. Should they do what the government says, and begin to let down their guard against the risk of catching the virus? Or should they heed the warnings of the five members of Sage (the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies) who believe the lifting of lockdown is premature, and the deputy chief medical officer for England, Professor Jonathan Van-Tam, who on Saturday described the present moment as “very dangerous”? Continue reading...

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31 мая, 20:41

Health officials make last-minute plea to stop lockdown easing in England

Royal College of Nursing also fears lifting of more restrictions on ‘happy Monday’ is too earlyCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageSenior public health officials have made a last-minute plea for ministers to scrap Monday’s easing of the coronavirus lockdown in England, warning the country is unprepared to deal with any surge in infection and that public resolve to take steps to limit transmisson has been eroded.The Association of Directors of Public Health (ADPH) said new rules, including allowing groups of up to six people to meet outdoors and in private gardens, were “not supported by the science” and that pictures of crowded beaches and beauty spots over the weekend showed “the public is not keeping to social distancing as it was”. Continue reading...

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31 мая, 20:30

Covid-19 misinformation: pro-Trump and QAnon Twitter bots found to be worst offenders

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Researchers find coordinated effort to promote conspiracy theory that coronavirus is a bioweapon engineered by ChinaMisinformation about the origins of Covid-19 is far more likely to be spread by pro-Trump, QAnon or Republican bots on Twitter than any other source, according to a study commissioned by the Australia Institute’s Centre for Responsible Technology.In late March, when the coronavirus pandemic was taking hold in the US and across much of the rest of the world, two researchers at Queensland University of Technology, Timothy Graham and Axel Bruns, analysed 2.6m tweets related to coronavirus, and 25.5m retweets of those tweets, over the course of 10 days. Continue reading...

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31 мая, 20:30

Life after lockdown: astronauts and adventurers on the ‘shock’ of getting back to normal

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After circumnavigating the world solo at 16, spending 20 weeks in space, and summiting Everest (twice), Jessica Watson, Andy Thomas and Peter Hillary have learned a lot about life after isolationThe New Zealand mountaineer Peter Hillary, who has twice reached the summit of Mount Everest and once spent 84 days trekking across Antarctica to the south pole, knows all too well what it feels like to return to “normal life” after an extended period of isolation.“It can be a shock,” he says. “While you’re away you get used to a certain kind of predictability and a new set of routines and then all of a sudden you’re back. And it can be quite confronting.” Continue reading...

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31 мая, 20:25

Coronavirus latest: at a glance

A summary of the biggest developments in the global coronavirus outbreakFollow our latest coronavirus blog for live news and updatesKey developments in the global coronavirus outbreak on Sunday include: Continue reading...

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31 мая, 20:13

Racing's return at Newcastle just the beginning of long road back

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Monday’s 10-race card, conducted under strict protocols, is an experiment with significance for other major sports, tooShortly after 1.05pm on Monday, one of a dozen horses will cross the winning line at Newcastle racecourse and racing will become the first major professional sport in Britain to log a result in its record books since the middle of March. A few hours later, there will be handshake-free conclusions to the first matches in snooker’s Championship League tournament in Milton Keynes. Sport, of a kind, is finally returning and until the Premier League resumes on 17 June racing will have the spotlight largely to itself.As well as an opportunity to attract new fans, Monday’s 10-race card in the north-east will come as an immense relief for the tens of thousands whose livelihoods depend on racing, above all the freelancers – jockeys included – who have not earned a penny from their trade for nearly three months. On-course bookmakers, though, will not be present just yet. Continue reading...

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31 мая, 20:08

Scottish and Welsh universities criticise UK cap on student numbers

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Limit on English students across UK ‘a real problem’ with number of overseas students set to fall in Covid-19 crisis Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageUniversity leaders have reacted angrily to the UK government’s plan to control the number of students from England who can study in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, saying that it was punishing them for problems caused by the coronavirus outbreak in England.The Department for Education in England is expected to confirm a cap on the number of undergraduates each university can recruit this autumn – limiting institutions to an increase of no more than 6.5% in the number of new students – in a bid to stop institutions poaching students from their rivals. Continue reading...